Thursday morning, local media including Al Dia, Technical.ly Media, Philadelphia Magazine and more had the opportunity to preview the new (semi-finished) Comcast Technology Center located in Center City. Philly Speaks has been on many press tours but not many are led by the CEO… it was great to meet Comcast’s CEO Brian Roberts, to obtain the background of the company and why this new location is important for the Philadelphia community.
When new buildings are developed sometimes Philadelphians think a couple of things…”What do I need to know?” or “I don’t work at Comcast” etc. – but Roberts explained how Comcast intends to engage – between the beautiful lobby with a mesmerizing digital display and the delicious coffee bar up the escalator (the media had the opportunity to sample some of the menu) Roberts stated the Vernick Coffee Bar not only will be “The finest coffee bar in the city” but it will be open to the public – once completed. So even if you are not a Comcast employee you will have the opportunity to experience the lovely and modern atmosphere while interacting with new people.
During the hour-long tour, alongside Brian Roberts and his team we toured multiple finished floors including the lobby, 6, 9, 27 and 30 – meeting some newly set-up employees and learning how this vision came to life.
The tour of ‘The Comcast Technology Center’ provided insight on how big Comcast is growing and the diverse opportunities available for our community to engage (employment, partnerships and more). The company will soon move their 1,000th employee in their new building (expecting around 4,000 in total) with splitting some employees from the current Comcast building across the street and the NBC 10/Telemundo teams relocating from City Ave to Center City. This new set up will allow the Philly community to have better access to the how technology can and will change our lives – allowing us to grow professionally and better take care of our families.
As the tech opportunities grow for the Black and Brown communities in the form of tech jobs, entrepreneurship and education – startups are welcomed at the Comcast Technology Center on their LIFT Labs floor dedicated to giving talented entrepreneurs access to Comcast NBCUniversal’s renowned network of partners, brands and mentors to foster rapid breakthroughs in media, entertainment and connectivity. Karen Buchholz, Comcast’s SVP of Administration, stated “We have a whole floor for entrepreneurs.”
Representation of the great Philly Arts and Culture scene is throughout the building with Comcast reaching out to 40 makers/artists with Philly connections to display their view of the city throughout each floor. From the infamous Love Statue to the timeline of neighborhood name changes – the art is beautiful and calming, reminding us there is so much to love about our city.
The final part of the tour discussed additional ‘open to the public’ initiatives including events focused on live media tours and more. Recently the Today Show was live in Philly for the Eagles Season Opener…normally we have to travel to NYC for those types of activities, great to know some of it will be local involving the community.
“As we look to the next 50 years, optimistically, it’s about innovation, change and technology. The businesses that we’re in are at the center of an exciting technological revolution.” ~ Brian Roberts, CEO-Comcast.
The Philly Speaks team will ensure that our diverse community is a part of the above innovation, change and technology solutions created in our great city.
By Tiffanie Stanard, Host/Producer @Philly_Speaks